The ChipList, by Adrian Offerman; The Processor Portal

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One Billion PCs by End of 2008

And another billion in five years

June 11, 2007 - By the end of next year, there will be more than one billion PCs in use worldwide. It took 27 years to reach this first billion. However, it will take only five years for the next billion.

According to the Forrester report Worldwide PC Adoption Forecast to 2015, this represents more than 12 percent Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) between 2003 and 2015. Specifically, the emerging Brazil, Russia, India, and China (BRIC) market will account for more than 775 million new PCs by then. The report praises programs like Microsoft Unlimited Potential, the Intel World Ahead Program, AMD 50x15, and One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) for bringing low-cost PCs to emerging countries.

The industry can probably survive selling incrementally better hardware and software to the people who already have technology in their lives, said Forrester Research Vice President and Research Director Simon Yates, but the vast majority of growth in the PC and related industries will come from emerging markets.

Risk

The revolutionair "zoom" interface of the OLPC project According to the analysts, vendors are facing unpredictability. They are used to the predictability of buyers in mature markets, but high volume launches into emerging markets are risky. Vendors won't have the luxury of introducing products on a small scale to test the market before going into full production because the economics will force suppliers to focus on bringing volume to market more quickly at much greater risk.

It is safe to assume that life cycles will be longer in emerging markets, Yates said. Vendors, accustomed to mature markets where the average life cycle is between four and and five years, will need to have a deep understanding of how to work in these markets and, with less of a market for replacement PCs, will need to band together to scale production for these emerging regions.

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